Pollution control - air handling units
Ventilation, air extraction and air-conditioning systems can be a source of contention within the community. Poorly installed or maintained plant can cause a nuisance to neighbours through noise disturbance or fume and odour problems. The latter particularly applies to extraction units at catering establishments such as restaurants and take-aways but may also include extraction systems from production plant at other commercial premises.
Guidance on the design, installation and maintenance of commercial kitchen extraction systems is available from the Government Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA): Guidance on the Control of Odour and Noise from Commercial Kitchen Exhaust Systems
It is highly recommended that you read this guidance before commissioning the installation of a new kitchen extraction system.
Exeter City Council can provide advice on all aspects of installation, both at catering establishments and other commercial premises. The submission of detailed plans for inspection may be required prior to installation of new units.
Please contact the Environmental Protection Unit for further information.
Please be aware that planning permission or building regulations approval may also be required for any works. Contact details above.
Air handling units within buildings may be linked to air conditioning systems. Some air conditioning systems e.g. those which use evaporative cooling may pose potential health risks if not properly maintained. Employers or persons in control of buildings must address the risks present in working environments, and take steps to ensure that these risks are controlled. Systems must therefore be designed, maintained and operated in such a way to prevent a risk to health. They should be serviced at appropriate intervals and the instructions provided by the supplier or manufacturer should be followed at all times.
Systems using evaporative condensers must be registered with the local authority under The Notification of Cooling Towers and Evaporative Condensers Regulations 1992. This is because this sort of air conditioning system uses water in an evaporative cooling process and has the potential to cause outbreaks of disease if not properly maintained, e.g. by producing Legionella bacteria which can cause Legionnaires Disease.
The primary purpose of cooling tower and condenser registration is ensure that the relevant enforcing authority can be satisfied that suitable control measures are in place to protect employees and the general public from the risk of infection by organisms such as legionella.
Guidance on the control of legionella in cooling towers and evaporative condensers can be found in the Health and Safety Executive's Publication Legionnaires ' disease - The control of legionella bacteria in water systems.